Our Friends in the Philippines – Please Help

As you all know, the stories coming from the Philippines are terrible and heartbreaking.  The extent of the devastation caused by Typhoon Haiyan (called Yolanda in the Philippines) is not yet known, but the loss of life and property is perhaps too high to even comprehend.

Renewing commitments, battling bullies, and celebrating servant-leaders

Another school year is now in high gear, and like you, we at “Character.org” once again find ourselves energized and empowered by all the new, hopeful faces we see each day and therejuvenated, resilient promise of the teaching profession, itself. Making a difference. That is your raison d’être and it is ours, as well. More … Continue reading “Renewing commitments, battling bullies, and celebrating servant-leaders”

A Virtues-Based Community: More than just a Dream

By Dr. Raquel Castrodad “If you can imagine it, you can achieve it. If you can dream it, you can become it.” – William Arthur Ward The quote from what is a brilliant ad slogan, “Just Do it!,” should be the guiding light and starting point of this voyage towards achieving a virtues-based community. It … Continue reading “A Virtues-Based Community: More than just a Dream”

Adventures in Student Teaching: My First Day at School (Take One & Two)

First in a series–how a new student teacher tries to implement character education based on her experience attending a National School of Character before entering college. With nervous energy and excitement, I arrived at the elementary school where I planned to begin my student teaching. It was superintendent’s conference day, and I was taking the … Continue reading “Adventures in Student Teaching: My First Day at School (Take One & Two)”

Taking Your School from Good to Great

Character education is often misunderstood. It is more than a word of the month or an assembly to honor students with good character. It exceeds catching students being good and helping those who are less fortunate. Character education is not a program, but a philosophy about how we ought to treat one another and why.  The fundamental lessons … Continue reading “Taking Your School from Good to Great”

Character Is Our Super Power

 by Barbara Gruener Is anyone out there as excited about the upcoming CEP National Forum as I am? One of my very favorite things about October is the chance to connect with other character educators from around the US and beyond its borders. It’s been an annual booster shot for me since I first attended … Continue reading “Character Is Our Super Power”

Powerful Analogies From Nature that Build Character

by Barbara A. Lewis Do you want to know something so strong that it survived the atomic explosion on Hiroshima? Might you guess a 400-pound gorilla that can hoist up 10 times its body weight? Or how about Iron Man or the Hulk (not fair—they’re not real)?  Or what about the annoying cockroach?  Well, you … Continue reading “Powerful Analogies From Nature that Build Character”

Creating Safe Spaces that Nurture Learning

When it comes to flourishing in school nowadays, scientific evidence is mounting that confirms what many of us have suspected all along—that if we want children to truly learn, and to perform better in life as both students and citizens, then we have to educate them in an environment that they see as safe, caring … Continue reading “Creating Safe Spaces that Nurture Learning”

The Kindness of Strangers: Help a Kid Gear Up for School

By Connie Matthiessen, Associate Editor of Great Schools (re-posted with permission) Back to school may be the second biggest shopping season of the year, but my family usually doesn’t join the stampede. My kids aren’t big shoppers, and neither am I; besides, times are tight. Someone will inevitably need a new pair of shoes or … Continue reading “The Kindness of Strangers: Help a Kid Gear Up for School”

The Content of Our Character

By Mark HyattPresident & CEO This Aug. 28 will mark the 50th anniversary of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s iconic “I Have A Dream” speech—or as we like to refer to it at CEP, his “Content of Character” speech. From the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, addressing more than 250,000 civil rights supporters … Continue reading “The Content of Our Character”

Happy Campers Building Character

By Mark Hyatt, President & CEO Before the summer slips away from us all, I would be remiss if I did not take a moment here to talk about the wonderful experience that occurred June 16-21 at CEP’s  second Leaders of Character Camp (LoCC), hosted once again by my alma mater, the U.S. Air Force … Continue reading “Happy Campers Building Character”

Character & Class: Why We Love #42

By Dave Keller, Director of Transformation & Strategic Initiatives The moment last night was powerful and uplifting — and well deserved. In the history of Major League Baseball, no one has done what New York Yankees’ relief pitcher Mariano Rivera has done.  Simply put:  He is the greatest closing relief pitcher ever. But that’s not … Continue reading “Character & Class: Why We Love #42”

How to Wean Kids from TV and Video Games and Back into L.I.F.E.

Noted psychologist and parenting expert Michele Borba serves on CEP’s Board of Directors and shares  her blogs with us. To read more check out her home page. Follow her on Twitter @micheleborba. The majority of parents admit their kids are in front of that TV more than they’d like, but with summer here that could … Continue reading “How to Wean Kids from TV and Video Games and Back into L.I.F.E.”

The 8 C’s of Character

  By Ed DeRoche There are only two C’s in “character,” but one can find many words that begin with C in describing good, positive character traits and behaviors. I’ve compiled a few C words that show the attributes of character. 1. Caring: Two important synonyms are “compassion” and “empathy.” Robert Krzaric wrote in The Greater … Continue reading “The 8 C’s of Character”

It really is a ‘Grand Old Flag’

By Joe Mazzola Today is Flag Day– at time to remember our nation’s freedoms and core values. I try to do that regularly. On Memorial Day, I attended a special ceremony at a small cemetery in the town that I now call home.  It was one of the most touching ceremonies I’ve ever attended. I felt … Continue reading “It really is a ‘Grand Old Flag’”

Can You Create ‘Quality Time’?

By Carey Casey  Leading up to Father’s Day, there’s a national campaign to remind fathers of the important role they play in their children’s lives. It uses a common phrase for its slogan: quality time. I endorse this, because we need dads embracing their roles, spending time with their kids, and making memories together. And … Continue reading “Can You Create ‘Quality Time’?”

Summer Reading—for Pleasure and for Professional Development

Four ‘Character’ Books to Explore By Becky Sipos, Chief Operating Officer When I was a teacher, I always looked forward to catching up on the pleasures of reading during summer vacation. I accumulated a big stack of beach reading and fun novels, but I also always took time to read some education books to improve my … Continue reading “Summer Reading—for Pleasure and for Professional Development”

The Legacy of an Honorable Man: Remembering Sandy McDonnell

One year ago, a great American died.  His name was Sandy McDonnell.  He was an honorable man who left behind a remarkable legacy.  It is one we can all learn from. Sandy was brilliant.   After graduating from Princeton and completing graduate school in Colorado, he worked on the Top Secret Manhattan Project during World War … Continue reading “The Legacy of an Honorable Man: Remembering Sandy McDonnell”

Promising Practices Spotlight: Bayless Elementary School

Bayless Elementary School – St. Louis, MO Program: Character Camp Bayless Elementary School in St. Louis, Missouri, created a year-end celebration called Character Camp. This Promising Practice empowers students, teachers, and parents to research and create various stations that emphasize the character traits. Here’s an example of how it worked one year. First, the teachers … Continue reading “Promising Practices Spotlight: Bayless Elementary School”

Lessons in Character and Integrity from Les Miserables

It seems like everyone just can’t get enough of Les Miserables.  It’s the world’s longest running musical, now seen by 60M people in 42 countries.  Along the way, it’s received 96 major international awards.  The most recent movie version is a box office smash, earning eight Academy Awards nominations.

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